The NACC Care Chef of the Year 2017 competition officially opens for entries

The National Association of Care Catering (NACC) has launched its 2017 search for the UK’s best chef working in the care sector. The NACC Care Chef of the Year 2017 competition is now officially open for entries.

The name of the prestigious culinary competition has changed from NACC Care Cook of the Year to NACC Care Chef of the Year, in recognition of the culinary excellence and professionalism within the sector and the specialist skills and knowledge demanded of and demonstrated by chefs.

Sponsored by the Worshipful Company of Cooks and Premier Foods, the NACC Care Chef of the Year competition spotlights the care catering sector and the talented, qualified chefs operating within it. Chefs from across the sector – including residential homes, local authorities and other care organisations, plus community services such as meals on wheels, day centres and luncheon clubs – are encouraged to enter.

The deadline for entries is Friday 3 February, 2017.

Neel Radia, national chair of the NACC, said: “Care catering is a highly-skilled profession and it’s only right that our culinary competition reflects this, both in content and name.

“Catering for the vulnerable and elderly is challenging and demands specialist skills, knowledge and responsibility. As people age their dietary needs change and a wide variety of special diets must be recognised and catered for safely. It’s vital that care chefs confidently deliver the right nutrition and hydration, together with exceptional flavours and eye-catching presentation, to ensure the enjoyment and quality of life of those they feed. Up and down the country, care chefs are doing this daily and the NACC Care Chef of the Year competition is a fantastic platform for them to demonstrate their culinary flair and talent, and to showcase excellence across the sector.

“Year on year the standard of entries grows and I’ve no doubt that 2017 will bring another incredibly impressive and inspiring competition. I urge all chefs working in a care environment to enter and seize the brilliant opportunities for development that the competition presents.”

The NACC Care Chef of the Year competition challenges entrants to create a nutritionally-balanced, two-course menu (main and dessert) that is suitable for service users in a care setting. The combined food cost for both courses must be no more that £2.25 per head based on four portions and it is to be produced in just 90 minutes. Participating chefs will be expected to demonstrate nutritional understanding of the foods they are using, plus culinary flair in flavours, execution and presentation.

All paper entries will be judged by a central judging panel that will be looking for innovation, costing, suitability for the environment, adherence to nutrition guidelines, taste and overall menu balance. Successful entrants will be invited to compete at the regional heats in March 2017, where they will have 90 minutes to produce their dishes and demonstrate their skill set under the watchful eye of the competition judges.

The two highest-scoring competitors from each regional heat will secure a place in the national final on Wednesday 7 June 2017 at Barking & Dagenham Technical Skills Academy. Here they will compete for the coveted title NACC Care Chef of the Year 2017.

For more information on the NACC Care Chef of the Year 2017 competition and to download an entry form visit www.thenacc.co.uk/events/care_chef_year

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